The authors weave a story about the medieval world (600-1500CE) and medieval medicine and bring their own research with the publications of other scholars. The story takes the reader on a journey to the medieval centers of Islamic knowledge: Cairo, Alexandria, Damascus and Baghdad. The major cultures and religions, Moslems, Christians and Jews, ebb and flow across time and political boundaries. The two principal themes are the transmission and elaboration of the ancient medical texts of Galen and Hippocrates and their translation from Greek into Arabic, Hebrew and Latin. As Europe emerged from the Dark Ages, its physicians drew upon this reservoir of medical observations as they developed their own empiricism.
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